Q&A: New Details For Call Of Duty: Black Ops Declassified

20 0
Q&A: New Details For Call Of Duty: Black Ops Declassified

Back in August, Jeff and I got a few minutes of hands-on time with Call of Duty: Black Ops Declassified, the upcoming PS Vita entry in the battle-tested military combat series. Though the game was early in production, our experience was promising and pointed to a faithful translation of Call of Duty’s signature multiplayer combat to PS Vita’s 5″ OLED screen and dual analog sticks.

Two months later, Activision and developer Nihilistic are shedding new details on this fall’s PS Vita punisher. We caught up with Robert Huebner, the developer’s studio head, for the latest intel drop.

Call of Duty Black Ops Declassified on PS Vita

PlayStation.Blog: How is the game progressing since we last saw it at Gamescom?

Robert Huebner, Studio Head, Nihilistic: Gamescom seems so long ago. I think the most noticeable thing is a significant visual upgrade; a richer color palette, more detailed models, and better lighting overall. Also we implemented an entirely new animation blending system that allows us to capture a lot of nuanced animation that Call of Duty players are accustomed to.

PSB: What do you consider to be the most crucial elements to nail when adapting Call of Duty to PS Vita?

RH: Two things really come to mind. The feel of the controls and weapons is a top priority, because that’s a lot of what makes Call of Duty work so well on other platforms. We got a lot of great insight and advice from the franchise veterans on this, but also adapted things for the specific controls on the PS Vita.

The second thing probably were animations. You don’t notice it all the time while you’re playing, but when you drill down, Call of Duty has an insane number of animations for each enemy and every little transition and move feels really accurate and intelligent. So we invested a lot of time in trying to capture that same feeling in Declassified.

PSB: Tell us about these new maps you’ve revealed, Nukehouse and Range. Nukehouse clearly seems inspired by the fan-favorite map Nuketown.

RH: Yeah, Nuketown is obviously a fan favorite so we wanted to really do an homage to that map. Nukehouse is a tighter level overall but tries to capture the unique look and feel of the original.

PSB: Here’s a question fans have been wondering about: How deep will the weapon modding system be?

RH: Weapons retain many of the attachments from previous games, with fan favorites such as suppressors, extended mags,underaction grenade launchers, and different optics. New additions also appear like improved grip, which improves hip fire accuracy, and adjustable stock, which gives full movement speed while using Aim Down the Sight.

In multiplayer, you’ll unlock these attachments by leveling up your weapons. You’ll be able to use up to two attachments with each primary weapon, and one attachment with secondary weapons.

Call of Duty Black Ops Declassified on PS Vita

PSB: How many Perks will be in the game, and what will they be? Anything new?

RH: There are a total of 12 Perks in Black Ops Declassified, with a mix of returning and new abilities. Hardline, Marksman, Sleight of Hand, and Lightweight are all back, but new perks like Surplus (extra starting ammo and grenades), Hardwired (immune to Counter Spy Plane) and Toughness (reduced flinching when shot) are also important to remember when creating classes.

PSB: Will there be different grenade types, and will any use PS Vita’s touchscreen in interesting ways?

RH: Definitely. We’re trying to bring back the most popular grenade and tactical weapons that fit the time period of our story, and there’s a lot of variety. The Bouncing Betty is one of the most popular around the office for multiplayer; there’s something very satisfying about getting a kill with one. And flash-bangs are also fun, the reaction of your opponents over Party voice chat is always entertaining. The front touchscreen is used to toss grenades as well as optionally to aim your throw.

PSB: What kinds of missions are planned for single-player?

RH: The single-player campaign consists of intense and replayable objective-based missions that allow you to get better and better over time to improve your performance. The goal is to give the player the experience of striving for the “perfect run” through each mission.

PSB: There are Survival missions in the game as well — what can you share?

RH: These “Hostiles” missions as we call them now are the classic “survive infinite waves” sort of challenge. The player has to survive wave after wave of different enemy types, but also receives “care package” drops during play to keep them supplied.

Join the Conversation

Add a Comment

But don't be a jerk!

Please be kind, considerate, and constructive. Report inappropriate comments to us_playstation_blog_moderation@sony.com


  • I hope it’s good. I can only enjoy COD for 1 hour tops as I’m not a massive fan. But I think the short play times will work for me at least on the Vita.

    I’m still very skeptical of Nihilistic though. Resistance wasn’t bad, but it didn’t look great, & it felt a bit clunky.

  • More inclined to believe this to be honest.


    The biggest franchise in gaming with one of the poorest devs? This only ends one way.

  • i think ACT don’t care about COD at all ..
    they just hand it to non related COD devs ..
    and with a price of 60$ i think it will be a mess .
    care about the games then u can say … the VITA doesn’t has the right support .
    Thanks .

  • I am not a COD fan by any stretch of the imagination, but I fully comprehend how valuable COD is and that it would be an immediate system seller. That being said, I have little faith in Nihilistic after Burning Skies; while that game was mechanically sound, it was overall a bad game. I hope they step up their game, otherwise this will be a giant flop.

  • I don’t know why, but I have a feeling that this could be better than most think it will be. Eight-player multi-player will keep the pacing down and not give the feeling of getting shot all the time.

  • No zombies, no buy. That’s how it is for me.
    There is nothing better than zombies while waiting for the bus.
    Spec ops missions are just meh….. the same thing almost every shooter game has. Dull missions and shooting normal humans.
    This has Black Ops in it’s name and if there won’t be any zombies = Big flop for me.

  • I have not played cod for ages, I used to be a big fan of cod. I don’t understand why people would play this instead of BF3. BF3 is better in every way shape of form. The maps are bigger, Better graphics, You can drive/fly vichals and the guns r more realistic and you have to think before you go running into a building and u can blow up walls ect. Cod you basically run around a small map just spraying bullets and all you can brake is windows lmao. The best thing about cod is zombies but not worth the 40 pound alone. Its only about time when cod sells less.

  • I’ve been waiting for a really good online shooter for the Vita! In guess what!? I have to wait till Killzone comes out D=

    I really wanted CoD on the Vita, but we’re only getting a half assed version. It would of been easy to create a easy cash flow with this game, just put in zombies, console CoD sized maps with at least 12 players, some decent graphics and the weapons/base game which is the ONLY thing declassification has right.

    All that is SUPER easy to do on something has powerful as the Vita, the PSP had games with upto 32 players online, the IPhone had CoD Zombies etc…

    I would hate to be apart of Sony when talking about this game, or be one of the developers as my god its bluntly obvious that this game is missing 99% of what makes a console CoD a Call of Duty title. – Lots of action online, decent sized maps so your not bored with them in 5 mins etc…

  • i agree XSpike and ign confirmed no zombies which makes this a no buy for the few people i know with a vita. Fred can you pass that info on to the devs? zombies is what made alot of us fall in love with world at war it was so addictive. I even have it on ipod touch in two versions but it not in this game when its touted as a true call of duty game from the black ops line.

  • One thing this game must have, if it’s to have any chance of been good and holding peoples attention is user definable controls, this will make or break the game IMO.

    Make it happen, nothing worse than a game that has controls you cant adjust to.

  • no zombies = failed game

  • I just hope its a good game and devs do a good job. if this is as bad as I fear it may mean the end of the vita.
    The vita needs a good FPS to win fans over and its yet to get one.

  • hey is online down again ? i cant logg inn

  • Hate to say this but COD Black Ops: Declassified will sell extremely poor hence it’s been developed by the same company who destroyed Resistance which that game only had 6 levels, unskippable cutscenes, uninteresting story/characters and great luck getting online by the way as Call of Duty on Vita will suffer these same problems too.

    Seriously Activision why that weak developer who destroyed Resistance? No zombies? Give me a break it will just sell really poorly so I except really poor reviews when it comes out.

  • It sounds quite good IMO, and the Vita needs a decent shooter, until KillZone comes out this may just fill the void.
    I think portable shooters usually feel “Half baked” because the hardware never allowed them to really develop anything substantial but now they have the tools to make a good COD game on a portable platform…
    Well, lets just wait and see before writing it off just because it has Call of Duty in the title.

  • Im now worried about kill zone. What if the vita just isn’t up to it.

  • @ jonny_hart_digit

    I’m not interested in PSV,I’m not interested in FPS’s on the move.But I wouldn’t worry about KZ.
    Great team in cambridge,so tech wise it should be top of the PSV FPS’s class (lol,not hard) And I think it’ll be seen as a good – great KZ game.

  • This would have been a huge reason for me to get a Vita. 4v4 sounds awful and they are not my first choice of developer. It just won’t have that CoD feeling. If this title was done properly I would have picked up a Vita this year with LBP, Uncharted and CoD.

  • if they add zombies, 6 vs 6 and a cross play map with the ps3 they might get this game right. Resistance(meh) :(

  • Little black screen announcement with title was breathtaking… opportunities! FPS on Vita! Biggest franchise ever comes to that dual-stick wielding power-horse handheld!
    And with every bit of ‘intel’ Declassified is becoming worse and worse and worse.
    I’ve seen this ‘animations’ in trailer… every soldier died THE SAME way (and no ragdolls). Big talk, runnin’ mouth. Show us your progress, fellas.
    that’s the reason I bought Vita – full-fledged games with REAL controls, and now there is half of a year later – still no games. LBP is cool and stuff, but it’s still LBP – just a platformer with editor. Uncharted was golden, but… where is games? No one want to create games for console that is dead by arrival. Even money-loving Activision decided to do cheap cash-in with some low-level devs, because Vita doesn’t deserve expensive games – there is no players anyway. Sony, open up your eyes and bring some big devs here with a big titles – Killzone, LBP and Uncharted ain’t enough. 3rd party companies won’t support your console if people don’t have your console in the first place. And people don’t have reason too – Vita has no games :D

Leave a Reply

Please enter your date of birth.